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Thread: Gun Show Impressions

  1. #1
    Regular Member Mainsail's Avatar
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    The Kel Tec RFB I just bought uses FAL metric magazines, purported to be the most readily available and inexpensive magazines in the universe. I, however, have found them very difficult to find. I picked some up in Lakewood for $20 a pop and they were well used. Searching online they are running about the same, price and condition, plus shipping. So I headed to the WAC gun show in Puyallup figuring there would be tons of them there.

    Nope. More on that in a bit. I hadn’t been to a gun show since the mid 80s when I was stationed in California. The gun atmosphere was very different in CA back then too BTW. Entry to the WAC show was SLOW….like “what the heck is going on!” slow. The actual Puyallup Fair has 100 times the people trying to get in and I never waited as long. The ladies working the registers looked like they were moving in slow motion or hopped up on old lady drugs.

    As I walked around the show, I didn’t notice any prices that were any better (on guns or ammunition) than I could get every day of the week at Mary’s Pistols or Cabela’s. Most things were priced higher, if you could even find a price at all. [Personal peeve: I absolutely hate to find an item with no price on it. That’s done because the seller wants to be able to price by trends at the show, or laziness.] Accessories were priced the same or higher than I can find locally or on the internet. Most of the stuff I saw was airsoft grade junk, few quality names at all. One of the mags I bought in Lakewood was faulty, and I took it back the next day and exchanged it. That’s something I couldn’t do with a show purchase. Most of the tables didn’t have any company name displayed anywhere.

    I did find two cosmoline packed new-old-stock FAL magazines for a decent price, good enough that I’m wondering if the seller might have made a mistake. The table across the aisle had some for 3x more for used beat ones.

    Conclusion. Why? I think the WAC and the sellers are (figuratively) shooting themselves in the foot. Poor service and high prices. Seriously, if the WA legislature, after some crime with a gun show purchased firearm, wanted to ban the shows altogether in the state, I wouldn’t feel motivated to so much as write an email, much less march or anything else.

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    Regular Member swatspyder's Avatar
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    My dad found a HK USP .40 for $600, used at most, 2 times, with a Kramer MSP Paddle Horsehide holster included.:celebrate


    And I forgot to mention, we went on Saturday at 12pm and it took like 20 minutes to get inside, there was such a big line. But it ended well.

    And while we were in line, there was a shootout inside the fairgrounds. But it was some reenactment with blanks... Lets just say it was about as real as it sounds, especially not being able to look past the shrubs to see what it was.

    Whoever thought it was a bright idea to have a reenactment at a gun show where your not allowed to have a loaded weapon, is an idiot.

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    So you're mad and think gun shows aren't worth having because you didn't find what you wanted? Really?

    This weekend's show was HUGE. I was there, as a member. I walked right past the line and through the gate. No waiting for members of WAC.

    The reason most tables don't have a company name is probably because most of the tables were held by private, regular citizens selling their own items. There are some companies that hold tables, but just as many, if not more, private citizens.

    Treat guns shows more like a yard sale of guns, knives, parts, ammo, and other random items and you'll have a much more enjoyable time. There are always deals to be had, and overpriced items as well. Almost everyone is willing to haggle on their pricing as well, so don't be afraid to make an offer on something if you want it.

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    Why did you not stop at my tables ? I had the "OPEN CARRY IS LEGAL" sign displayed at the end of the table. If you did come by why didn't you stop? I had several hand guns (ie S&W 25-5, with original box and all accessories that came with it when new) for $550.00 gun was in 95% or better. First collector that saw it bought it no questions asked re price.

    Come again and look me up. I can give you some insight on buying and selling there.

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    Regular Member Mainsail's Avatar
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    So you're mad and think gun shows aren't worth having because you didn't find what you wanted? Really?
    Wow! Are you sure you’re replying to my post? I never said anything about being mad nor did I ever say the shows aren’t worth having. I said I was disappointed.

    This weekend's show was HUGE. I was there, as a member. I walked right past the line and through the gate. No waiting for members of WAC.
    I won’t join any organization that I consider to be anti-gun. The rules they have in place for the gun shows, and the rationale behind them, are straight out of the Bloomberg playbook. I’ve elucidated this in the past in several threads so there’s no point rehashing it. I have several friends who are WAC members and I support them 100%, my beef is with WAC the organization, not its members.

    The reason most tables don't have a company name is probably because most of the tables were held by private, regular citizens selling their own items. There are some companies that hold tables, but just as many, if not more, private citizens.
    Yes, I understand that. I was making the point that if I’m going to spend the same amount of money on an item, I’d rather spend it someplace I can get some customer service should the need arise. If I go to a yard sale or flea market, I expect to pay considerably less than I would in a brick & mortar retail establishment.

    Treat guns shows more like a yard sale of guns, knives, parts, ammo, and other random items and you'll have a much more enjoyable time. There are always deals to be had, and overpriced items as well. Almost everyone is willing to haggle on their pricing as well, so don't be afraid to make an offer on something if you want it.
    Yes, I’m sure there were some deals to be found, I found one myself. Overall, that was the exception, not the rule. But I also have to factor the $8 into my good deal. I would compare it more to a flea market than a yard sale, especially since I passed several folks who hadn’t occupied the same room as a bar of soap in weeks. As for pricing, it doesn’t take much to write a price down since the seller is often occupied with someone who isn’t trying to buy anything, but rather just stand there and chew the fat. Maybe I’m too polite.


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    Regular Member Mainsail's Avatar
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    Trigger Dr wrote:
    Why did you not stop at my tables ? I had the "OPEN CARRY IS LEGAL" sign displayed at the end of the table. If you did come by why didn't you stop? I had several hand guns (ie S&W 25-5, with original box and all accessories that came with it when new) for $550.00 gun was in 95% or better. First collector that saw it bought it no questions asked re price.

    Come again and look me up. I can give you some insight on buying and selling there.
    I looked for you! I walked the whole show and then did a wander-through looking for the Open Carry banner but never saw it. Where were you located?

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    I was in the center of the second row fropm the west wall. Directly across from theBig red Ruger Hawkeye Sign and display. Sorry to have missed you. Most of the private "vendors" expect to be bargained down and price their items high to be "bargained" down to what they really want, usually a good 10 - 15%. I can point out the ones to avoid, and will walk around with you and do so.

    Jim

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    Regular Member Mainsail's Avatar
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    Trigger Dr wrote:
    I was in the center of the second row fropm the west wall. Directly across from theBig red Ruger Hawkeye Sign and display. Sorry to have missed you. Most of the private "vendors" expect to be bargained down and price their items high to be "bargained" down to what they really want, usually a good 10 - 15%. I can point out the ones to avoid, and will walk around with you and do so.

    Jim
    I'm surprised I was able to miss you. All the way there in the car I was rehearsing, "Yo, Trigger Dr! Hey, Trigger Dr...."



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    Mainsail wrote:
    So you're mad and think gun shows aren't worth having because you didn't find what you wanted? Really?
    Wow! Are you sure you’re replying to my post? I never said anything about being mad nor did I ever say the shows aren’t worth having. I said I was disappointed.

    This weekend's show was HUGE. I was there, as a member. I walked right past the line and through the gate. No waiting for members of WAC.
    I won’t join any organization that I consider to be anti-gun. The rules they have in place for the gun shows, and the rationale behind them, are straight out of the Bloomberg playbook. I’ve elucidated this in the past in several threads so there’s no point rehashing it. I have several friends who are WAC members and I support them 100%, my beef is with WAC the organization, not its members.

    The reason most tables don't have a company name is probably because most of the tables were held by private, regular citizens selling their own items. There are some companies that hold tables, but just as many, if not more, private citizens.
    Yes, I understand that. I was making the point that if I’m going to spend the same amount of money on an item, I’d rather spend it someplace I can get some customer service should the need arise. If I go to a yard sale or flea market, I expect to pay considerably less than I would in a brick & mortar retail establishment.

    Treat guns shows more like a yard sale of guns, knives, parts, ammo, and other random items and you'll have a much more enjoyable time. There are always deals to be had, and overpriced items as well. Almost everyone is willing to haggle on their pricing as well, so don't be afraid to make an offer on something if you want it.
    Yes, I’m sure there were some deals to be found, I found one myself. Overall, that was the exception, not the rule. But I also have to factor the $8 into my good deal. I would compare it more to a flea market than a yard sale, especially since I passed several folks who hadn’t occupied the same room as a bar of soap in weeks. As for pricing, it doesn’t take much to write a price down since the seller is often occupied with someone who isn’t trying to buy anything, but rather just stand there and chew the fat. Maybe I’m too polite.
    Ok, disappointed. I stand corrected.

    These shows really ARE like a flea market/yard sale. There are people from all walks of life there. I'm sure if you attend more you will learn how they work and will understand the expected haggling and not be afraid to make offers on items you want. The worst they can say is no.

    I understand your dislike for organizations that put on shows such as this one. But like has been said before, they are simply protecting themselves. If you don't like them, you are free to not attend. Or spend your time sitting in line as members walk past you and go inside. Either way you are supporting the organization when you attend.

    As far as being able to return items or have some customer service to go with it, you're more than welcome to shop at retail stores. I personally have no issue with buying items second hand so long as they aren't an item that is prone to failure. I'll also gladly buy new guns or parts from many of the vendors at the shows. I guess I just weigh the pros and cons of buying these types of items from people I may not see again. I have one particular vendor that I buy new guns from on a semi-regular basis at the shows. They are ALWAYS the cheapest, and far cheaper than any shop I've been to. I usually go to these shows to either buy a specific item, which I've thoroughly researched, or to browse and drool.

    I do however agree that it is VERY annoying when a table holder is standing there BSing with someone and not acknowledging the potential customer standing in front of them. It happens far less to me now that I'm a Life Member and have that gold badge hanging around my neck, but it still happens. I actually left the show slightly annoyed that someone I really wanted to talk to was busy talking cars with someone than noticing me standing there with a gun related question/potential deal.

    I have a hard time understanding why there is such a dislike for gun shows on this forum. Are most of the members here pro registration? Are you not interested in private sales? I just don't get it. There are always some things that any large organization has to do in order to protect itself that we may not like. But I truly think that some sacrifices must be made for the greater good they can provide.

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    Regular Member Batousaii's Avatar
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    I found myself an exceptionally well kept, seemed almost new (old original model) Ruger Vaquero .45 Colt, blued with a 4 5/8" barrel for $400 bucks out the door. It didnt even have the usual line on the side of the cylinder from being rotated. Looked all over the gun show for one of these, found it at one of the back tables at the show, and i believe i got it at well below it's value -YaY!- Been wanting one for years.
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    Regular Member 1245A Defender's Avatar
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    Finally, the drop loop holster! See you at the next get together. its gonna be a gas!
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    Regular Member John Hardin's Avatar
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    Mainsail wrote:
    The Kel Tec RFB I just bought uses FAL metric magazines, purported to be the most readily available and inexpensive magazines in the universe.
    They were ... ten years ago. They're rather spendy anymore. Last I looked Gunbroker had some large lots (x10, x20) available for a good individual price, and occasionally a good deal will show up (Numrich had a great deal a few months back, I wish I'd bought more at the time).

    An RFB? You bastard.

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    The Kel Tec RFB I just bought uses FAL metric magazines, purported to be the most readily available and inexpensive magazines in the universe.
    Kel Tec should take a tip from their own SUB-2000 and make the RFB in multiple-magazine variants. I wonder if the M14 mag would conceptually even work--Mainsail, what's the mag well like, would it handle something like the M14 mag with minor adjustments?

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    Regular Member kwiebe's Avatar
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    I agree with the OP that certain aspects about the show can be disappointing. Especially prices. Sure, it may be like yard sales, but how many times have you been to a yard sale and thought, "Wow, this guy really likes his stuff!" - so much so that he obviously isn't very anxious to part with it.

    I think one reason is that it's so much of a seller's market right now and everything gun-related is automatically high-priced. The sellers are in tune with that. For example, +1 for the comment about ammo. There were no ammo price wars going on at the show, that's for sure. More expensive than regular retail outlets. Why? Because that's what the market will bear. Supply and demand.

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    Regular Member Batousaii's Avatar
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    2, 4, 5 A defender wrote:
    Finally, the drop loop holster! See you at the next get together. its gonna be a gas!
    hehe - darn tootin partner~!

    - Yeap, i still gotta get the holster, but it's well underway - yAY!
    Bat
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    Regular Member Johnny Law's Avatar
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    Mainsail wrote:
    The Kel Tec RFB I just bought uses FAL metric magazines, purported to be the most readily available and inexpensive magazines in the universe. I, however, have found them very difficult to find. I picked some up in Lakewood for $20 a pop and they were well used. Searching online they are running about the same, price and condition, plus shipping. So I headed to the WAC gun show in Puyallup figuring there would be tons of them there.
    Metric fal mags are Usually very plentiful at the WAC show. The average going rate is about $8 each, and a little more for new (old stock). I had several hundred of them, and could barely give them away (don't ask they're all gone).

    Someone here said that you should treat the show like a garage sale. Pick through the overpriced stuff and buy the deals. You do have to really hunt, but there are some good buys there if you scour every table.

    In you travels, keep your eye out for 30 rounders (as in my pic below). They are fairly rare, but cansometimes be found at the WAC show. I've managed to buy up 5 of them over several years (don't they look wicked in my paratrooper?) and will never part with them.

    Happy hunting. J.L.
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    Johnny Law wrote:
    I've managed to buy up 5 of them over several years (don't they look wicked in my paratrooper?) and will never part with them.

    Happy hunting. J.L.
    :P Massive FAL jealousy at my house right now!

    PS A couple summers ago I picked up a Fairborn-Sykes commando knife for $20. You just have to keep looking. The deals are out there.

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    Regular Member Mainsail's Avatar
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    Very nice! I really want to get a flat top upper for my AR-15, jts haven't had the funds, or when I do have them, they've been directed elsewhere...

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    I can help if you're still looking for Metric FAL Mags. Let me know.

    eMail is: zadok43@comcast.net

    Very cool battery offirearms. Thanks for the pictures.

    CW






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    I think you see the show differently than many that join the club (WAC) and enjoy the show every month. It is a collectors show. Sure, you can look for deals, but the real purpose is for people to share a passion and hobby. I personally have purchased 3 guns over the years. M1 Carbine, Winchester Model 70 7mm and lastly a Sig 380. Each was a great price. Each was sold by reputable people and I see them at each show. Each purchase was negotiated. My Model 70 was purchased at a super price and then given to Armwerkes to improve. It now is a 550 yard canyon buster, with sub 6 inch shot group. To think that the show is some sort of flea market for guns is misguided. To say that you wouldn't care about the legislation shutting the show down is very disappointing to me in that you really have no clue how important it is to preserve the right to have these shows. The WAC is very well run, primarily by volunteers. You must be a member to buy a gun, which includes a background check. So it is very unlikely a show purchase (legally) will result in some sort of crime.

    I went on Saturday near noon, the peak, and got right thru! I packed in my S&W 357 with no problem. Members walk right thru!

    I hope you join WAC and get to know some of the people. It is a great club and show!

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